Actor and entertainment host Mario Lopez is in the hot seat after suggesting last month it’s “dangerous” for parents to allow their young children to determine their own sexual and gender identities.
Karamo Brown, one of the stars of Netflix’s “Queer Eye,” took to Twitter Tuesday to voice his disapproval of the incoming “Access Hollywood” host’s comments.
Lopez, 45, made his remarks about transgenderism after being asked by conservative firebrand Candace Owens about actor Charlize Theron’s decision to raises her now-7-year-old son Jackson as a female.
Theron said in April she began raising Jackson as a girl when, at three years old, her biological son told her he was really a female. Lopez told Owens he is “blown away” by the trend.
The celebrity interviewer is right to have concerns. There has not yet been enough research to determine the effects of delaying or preventing puberty by using so-called puberty blockers, which are being used for “off-label” reasons when given to children experiencing gender dysphoria.
There also isn’t enough data to know whether the impact of puberty blockers is reversible, should a child change his or her mind — as they are wont to do.
In addition, doctors have warned testosterone and estrogen, the hormones stalled by puberty blockers, play an important role in children’s neurological development and bone growth.
Dr. Courtney Finlayson, a pediatric endocrinologist at Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago, argued puberty blockers are “very safe,” but admitted “there is some decrease in bone density during treatment with pubertal suppression.”
Regardless, Lopez was met with intense backlash for airing his concerns:
Lopez is also receiving support. Some social media users have been using the hashtag #IStandWithMarioLopez.
What is Lopez saying now?
Lopez is now on clean-up duty. In a statement shared with NBC News on Wednesday, the former “Saved by the Bell” star described his comments to Owens as “ignorant and insensitive.”
He explained he now has “a deeper understanding of how hurtful they were.”
“I have been and always will be an ardent supporter of the LGBTQ community, and I am going to use this opportunity to better educate myself,” Lopez said. “Moving forward, I will be more informed and thoughtful.”